Porsche gives sneak peek at new 911 prototype
The 2020 Porsche 911 undergoing final testing in Finland. (Porsche)
Published Wednesday, November 7, 2018 8:54AM EST
The eighth generation of the Porsche 911 will be coming to the European market early next year, but not before the prototype completes its final tests across the world. The company was generous enough to release some snapshots of the car during its endurance testing program.
The 2020 Porsche 911 prototype has been undergoing rigorous final testing before the production model hits the market in early 2019.
To assess how well the interior components, combustion engine, and air conditioning can handle the heat, Porsche tested the model in the desert, to ensure the entire car could withstand temperatures typical of the Gulf States in the Middle East or Death Valley in the U.S.
To test the vehicles functioning in the cold, on the other hand, the prototype was brought to Finland where temperatures drop as low as -35 C. In this frigid environment, Porsche tested the vehicle's cold start capabilities, heating and air conditioning, traction on snow and ice, handling and breaking, and control systems response.
For endurance testing, the 911 cruised on China's roads and sprinted along the country's race tracks in "a traffic structure that is typical for that country," where fuel quality can also vary greatly.
To ensure the engine, transmission, brakes, and chassis can withstand high-speed driving while staying cool and in control, the vehicle was tested on the Nürburgring race track in Germany and Nardò test tracks in Italy. Its endurance was further tested at opposite elevations: 4,300 metres above sea level in Mount Evans, Colorado, and 90 meters below in Death Valley.
Though it's essential to test the 911 in all weather conditions, including the extreme climates where some of the production models will be used, most drivers will be taking their Porsche out on public urban and rural roads as part of their daily routine. The cars were also thoroughly tested in these no less important environments.
In total, the prototype models have been driven around three million kilometres. In theory, they can withstand every environment that a driver could possibly put them through, and the 911 undoubtedly looks good even under all this stress.
Though the model is not yet officially scheduled to be unveiled to the public, the LA Auto Show (Nov. 30 to Dec. 9) presents the perfect opportunity for a reveal.